THE VARIETY OF POETRY a single photo can inspire always amazes me. As do other poets.
At the recent opening of Image and the Word 9 at the Emy Frentz Gallery in Mankato, I mingled with poets. One writes a poem a day. Amazing.
Each year for the past several, I’ve participated in this exhibit which features inspirational photos and reactionary poems by southern Minnesota photographers and writers. I wrote four poems, including one about my automotive machinist husband, Randy. A photo of laced work boots prompted that personal poem.
My Husband at the End of His Work Day
Leather boots lace your aching feet.
Grease outlines your fingernails.
Oil smudges stain your standard blue uniform.
You come home bone-weary, eat, shower, change,
then settle into the recliner with your Sudoku.
Your head nods. You are napping
long before the ten o’clock news,
just like every other hard-working blue collar man.
Standing in a small circle with poets Henry, Ed and Susan, I agreed that our experiences often shape our poetry. Consider that the next time you read a poem. We concurred also that we love words. As a poet, there’s a deep sense of joy and fulfillment in words falling together. Sometimes, oftentimes, we don’t understand how that happens. But when it does, it’s magical. It’s poetry.
FYI: The Image and the Word 9 exhibit will run through May 18 at the Emy Frentz Gallery, 523 South Second Street, Mankato. Gallery hours are from noon to 4 p.m. each weekday except Thursday, when hours are 4 p.m. – 8 p.m. Southern Minnesota Poets Society members Yvonne Cariveau and Derek Liebertz produce the exhibit annually.
© Copyright 2016 Audrey Kletscher Helbling
I like short poems that don’t strain my brain to understand them or wear me out with their length or depth. In other words, I like this poem!
Thank you, Gretchen. Sometimes short poems are more difficult to write than long, although this one came rather easily.
I, too, like poetry I can understand.
Beautiful – the Simple Things at times are the Most Inspiring and Though Provoking – thanks so much for sharing 🙂 Happy Week – Enjoy!
Thank you. I believe you are right.
Your poem hit the proverbial nail on the head, it is so indicative of life. I can see in my minds eye, the scene, the chair, the nodding head, yes I understand it completely! Great down to earth poem………………
Thank you, Don. I confess to also nodding off. But it’s never over Sudoku. I can’t do those number puzzles.
I like the photo of the boots…and I like your poem!
Thank you, Jackie.
Just Beautiful, my darling 🙂 x
I knew you would approve of this book and post. We need to continue to speak up, to be a voice. Thank you, dearest Kim, for being such a strong voice.
Great poem. Sounds like a good hardworking man.
The photo alone speaks volumes and conjures up a variety of images especially when paired with a sharp no nonsense poem. Hope to see the other three poems posted in near future 🙂
Thank you for that assessment of my poem as sharp and no nonsense. That is a good description.
These boots are the very essence
of the working soul
from the farmer on the fruited plain
to the miner digging coal.
These boots they are a symbol
of all who toil and sweat
and everyday they’re donned again
because the work, it ain’t done yet
These boots should be a reminder
of how this country came to be
and some boots too by heroes worn
have kept our country free.
Inspirational photo Audrey.
Jake, I adore your poem. It’s perfect. Thank you for sharing this with me and my readership.
It of was your inspiration Audrey. Thank You..
I love the poem. My husband worked as an auto-mechanic for about 4 years, and now has a new job as a maintenance mechanic for a recycling company. He has worn through many work boots since I’ve known him, and he often falls asleep long before 10, “just like every other hard-working blue collar man.”
And we love our hard-working blue collar men, don’t we?